Artificially intelligent machines that can converse and argue with humans are just years away, according to scientists in the United Kingdom, as speech technology starts to take off.
The scientists are building a voice-activated device that can recognise and generate natural-sounding speech for the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council.
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The group is particularly interested in improving the ability of the technology to adapt to users and contexts.
Artificial intelligence will help devices become familiar with the user’s voice, with the ultimate goal that it can understand, speak and behave like a human.
Dr Thomas Hain, of the University of Sheffield, says: “Speech technology is clearly on its way into the mainstream, but the key to its success is human-like performance”.
The technology could be employed in nearly all facets of life, suggesting start-ups should consider it as a viable business opportunity. How could this technology be applied to consumers?